Security sources say Ansarullah fighters of Yemen’s Houthi movement have managed to take control of the presidential palace in the southern city of Aden.
According to officials in Aden, Houthi fighters took control of the Maashiq palace on Thursday after heavy clashes with forces loyal to fugitive president, Abed Rabbuh Mansur Hadi.
A witness told AFP that dozens of Ansarullah fighters and their allies “arrived in armored vehicles and entered the palace.”
The palace, which was the last bastion of power for Hadi before he fled to neighboring Saudi Arabia, is a collection of luxurious buildings atop a hill close to the Arabian Sea.
The advance by revolutionaries comes against the backdrop of an ongoing military aggression by Saudi Arabia against Yemen, which has claimed hundreds of lives so far.
Houthi fighters, who took control of the capital Sana’a last September, continue making gains south of the country. The capture of Hadi’s palace in Aden comes after a week of clashes on the outskirts of the city.
Hadi fled to Riyadh on March 25 after Houthis bore down on the strategic port city.
He then attended a summit of Arab League leaders in the Egyptian resort of Sharm el-Sheikh, where he appealed to Arab governments to join Saudi Arabia’s aggression on Yemen.
Hadi stepped down in January and refused to reconsider the decision despite calls by the Houthi Ansarullah movement.
However, the Ansarullah movement later said Hadi had lost his legitimacy as president of Yemen after he escaped Sana’a to Aden in February.
The revolutionaries said after taking control of Sana’a that the Hadi government was incapable of properly running the affairs of the country and containing the growing wave of corruption and terror.